214 E. Elm Street
P.O. Box 568
Hillsboro ,
TX
76645
Fax: (254) 582-0112

Planning Technician for the Community Development Director
Richard S. Reinhardt, Jr
rreinhardt@hillsborotx.org
Community Development Director
Jerry Barker

Community Development FAQ

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The best way to find out if you need a permit is to call your local building department. Permits are usually required for the following:
New buildings
Additions (bedrooms, bathrooms, family rooms, etc.)
Residential work (decks, garages, fireplaces, pools, water heaters, etc.)
Renovations (garage conversions, basement furnishings, kitchen expansions, re-roofing, etc.)
Electrical systems
Plumbing systems
HVAC (heating, ventilating and air-conditioning) systems

Permits are required for repairs or replacement of the parts of a building related to maintenance of structural integrity and systems related to Mechanical, Electrical, or Plumbing.

Yes. Water heaters are covered under the Plumbing and/or Fuel Gas Code, and State Law. It is illegal for anyone, even a homeowner, to replace a water heater without a permit. Every year, people are killed or injured due to improperly installed water heaters.

A permit is required for storage buildings exceeding 120 square feet in area.

Permits are not required for driveways entirely on private property that do not tie into the curb/street. Permits are not required for sidewalks entirely on private property. Permits are not required for retaining walls not over four feet in height, unless the retaining wall is close enough to a structure that it is carrying foundation loads. Retaining walls over four feet in height require permits, and plans must be prepared by a State of Texas registered Professional Engineer. No permit is required for patio slabs unless the slab is carrying roof loads.

State law regulates handicapped accessibility. All work falling under the scope of the Texas Accessibility Standards must be reviewed/inspected by a State licensed accessibility contractor. It is the owner/architect/project manager’s responsibility to secure the services of the State licensed contractor. The City will require verification to be submitted, showing compliance with State law.

Yes. Due to the extremely expansive soils in this area, foundations (new and addition) must be designed by a State of Texas Registered Professional Engineer.

You can report tall grass & weeds or other nuisances to the Community Development Department at 254-582-3341. The City will investigate the complaint, if it is found to be in violation a notice to the property owner advising them that a violation has been found and provides them time to abate the nuisance and advises that if the nuisance is not abated within the specified timeframe the City may abate the nuisance and a lien will be filed against the property.

Increased Value — Your home or business is an investment. If your construction project does not comply with the codes adopted by your community, the value of your investment could be reduced. Property insurers may not cover work done without permits and inspections. If you decide to sell a home or building that has had modifications without a permit, you may be required to tear down the addition, leave it unoccupied or do costly repairs.

Protects — A property owner who can show that code requirements were strictly and consistently met, as demonstrated by a code official’s carefully maintained records, has a strong ally if something happens to trigger a potentially destructive lawsuit.

Ensures Safety — Your permit also allows the code official to protect the public by reducing the potential hazards of unsafe construction and ensuring public health, safety and welfare. By following code guidelines, your completed project will meet minimum standards of safety and will be less likely to cause injury to you, your family, your friends or future owners.

  • All applicants must fill out a peddlers permit application for each person that will be selling items.
  • Peddler permits are required for anyone going from door to door or who are setting up on property where they have permission to do so.
  • Charitable organizations (boy scouts, girl scouts, etc.) are required to obtain a peddler’s permit but the fee may be waived.
  • Permits are good for 1 month only ( $30.00 per month)
  • An individual can pay for as many months in advance as they desire to or get a discount by paying for a year at a time ($300.00).
  • The application for a permit must be accompanied by a bond in the amount of $1,000.00 (one thousand dollars) signed by the applicant, as surety, by some surety company authorized to do business in this state, payable to the City of Hillsboro, Texas. In lieu of a bond a peddler can provide a copy of insurance that covers any liabilities.
  • Applicants that plan to sell prepared food products must show proof of a doctor’s examination for communicable diseases.
  • All applicants must show drivers license, if such license is held and must be fingerprinted and photographed at the Hillsboro Police Department by the Chief of Police.
  • Peddlers can not engage in the business of peddling within the city between the hours of one half (1/2) hour before sunset and 9:00 a.m. the following morning, or at any time on Sundays except by specific appointment with or invitation from the prospective customer.
  • Soliciting is Prohibited:
    • At residences with No Solicitors signs posted
    • Within 1000’ of schools,
    • Within 1000’ of designated intersections,
    • If under age of 18,
    • Without a traffic safety vest.
  • Handbills prohibited on any Public Property, Right of Way, Utility poles, Fences, etc.
  • State Certificate required for sale of nursery/floral stock.

Generally speaking, the following work is exempt from permits.
 

Building:

  • One-story detached accessory structures used as tool and storage sheds, playhouses and similar uses, provided the floor area does not exceed 120 square feet (11.15m2).
  • Sidewalks and driveway not more than 30 inches (762 mm) above grade and not over any basement or story below and which are not part of an accessible route.
  • Painting, papering, tiling, carpeting, cabinets, counter tops and similar finish work.

Electrical:

  • Repairs and maintenance: A permit shall not be required for minor repair work, including the replacement of lamps or the connection of the approved portable electrical equipment to approved permanently installed receptacles.

Gas:

  • Portable heating, cooking or clothes drying appliances.
  • Replacement of any minor part that does not alter approval of equipment or make such equipment unsafe.

Mechanical:

  • Portable heating appliance.
  • Portable ventilation appliances.
  • Portable cooling unit.
  • Steam, hot or chilled water piping within any heating or cooling equipment regulated by this code.
  • Replacement of any minor part that does not alter approval of equipment or make such equipment unsafe.
  • Portable evaporative cooler.
  • Self-contained refrigeration systems containing 10 pounds (4.54 kg) or less of refrigerant or that are actuated by motors of 1 horsepower (746 W) or less.

However, if you have any questions at all as to whether your project requires a permit, please do not hesitate to contact the Community Development Department.